Long Road Distillers Named Best Craft Specialty Spirits Distillery in the Country
Grand Rapids distillery takes top honors in the USA TODAY 10Best Readers’ Choice Travel Awards Contest for second straight year
Grand Rapids, Michigan – Internationally recognized Grand Rapids distillery, Long Road Distillers, has taken home top honors for the second year in a row and was named “Best Craft Specialty Spirits Distillery in the United States” as part of the USA TODAY 10Best Readers’ Choice Travel Awards. Over their three-year history the distillery has gained lots of attention for their award-winning, locally-sourced and craft-distilled line-up of spirits, including gins, vodkas, aquavits, whiskies, and liqueurs.
Long Road Distillers topped a list of 20 nominees from around the country that were carefully chosen by a panel of American spirits experts. The public then had the opportunity to vote for their favorites over the course of four weeks. The nominating panel included Emily Arden Wells, editor and founder of Gastronomista; Brian Christensen, publisher and editor of Artisan Spirit Magazine; Ziggy Eschliman, founder of ZigStyle and award-winning radio host; Kevin Gray, co-founder and editor-in-chief of Bevvy; Eric Grossman, a food and beverage writer and author of Craft Spirits; and Jack Robertiello, a writer and acclaimed wine and spirits judge.
“We’re excited to share this honor with our friends and supporters for a second year!” said Jon O’Connor, co-owner and founder of Long Road Distillers. “We have a ton of respect for every nominee on this list, and we’ve admired them as leaders in our industry for years. To be nominated with them is honor enough – but to top the list is truly humbling!”
O’Connor and fellow co-owner Kyle VanStrien are quick to recognize how this award is different from past honors, and credit not only their team, but also their loyal customers, guests, family and friends.
“Unlike some competitions where judging takes place amongst a few individuals, this contest offers those that enjoy our spirits around the country an opportunity to show their support,” said VanStrien. “We’re proud of our team for constantly living out our mission of crafting world-class spirits right here in West Michigan, and always pushing the boundaries of what can be made from local agriculture!”
Long Road’s no-shortcuts approach to crafting spirits and a dedication to using locally sourced ingredients has earned them numerous honors and awards, as well as international acclaim for some lesser-known spirits categories, such as their Aquavits and liqueurs. Their spirits can be found at the distillery on Grand Rapids’ West Side and at over 1,000 retailers, bars, and restaurants throughout the state of Michigan.
About Long Road Distillers:
Long Road Distillers was born from the belief that making world-class spirits means never taking shortcuts along the way. After becoming the first craft distillery in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Long Road Distillers formed relationships with local farmers to bring that mission to Grand Rapids’ West Side neighborhood. Each spirit produced at Long Road Distillers is milled from locally sourced ingredients, fermented, and distilled on-site. The result is an uncompromised lineup of spirits including Vodka, Gin, Whisky and more. Their spirits, along with a handcrafted collection of cocktails and a wide variety of food can be enjoyed at their tasting room on Leonard Street. www.LongRoadDistillers.com
About USA TODAY: USA TODAY is a multi-platform news and information media company. Founded in 1982, USA TODAY’s mission is to serve as a forum for better understanding and unity to help make the USA truly one nation. Through its unique visual storytelling, USA TODAY delivers high-quality and engaging content across print, digital, social and video platforms. An innovator of news and information, USA TODAY reflects the pulse of the nation and serves as the host of the American conversation – today, tomorrow and for decades to follow. USA TODAY, the nation’s number one newspaper in print circulation with an average of more than 1.6 million daily, and USATODAY.com, an award-winning newspaper website launched in 1995, reach a combined 6.6 million readers daily. USA TODAY is a leader in mobile applications with more than 16 million downloads on mobile devices.
About 10Best.com: 10Best.com provides users with original, unbiased, and experiential travel content of top attractions, things to see and do, and restaurants for top destinations in the U.S. and around the world. The core of the site’s uniqueness is its team of local travel experts: a well-traveled and well-educated group who are not only experts in their fields – and their cities – but discriminating in their tastes. These local experts live in the city they write about so the content is constantly updated. 10Best.com averages 5 million visitors per month. It was acquired by USA TODAY in January of 2013.